Orientation
Location: Nonglu Sub-district, Sangkhlaburi District, Kanchanburi Province
Distance from Border: Less than 1 km
Distance from Sangklaburi: 31 kms / approx. 1 hour driving time (through the village of Huai Malai
Distance from Bangkok: 430 kms / approx. 6 hours driving time
Accessibility: Car: all-year-round access; requires 4WD in rainy season
Phone: mobile phone coverage only behind “Or Sor” checkpoint at camp entrance.
Camp Geography: Area 70 acres (11 ha)
TBC Feeding Population: 3,736 (March 2012)

Breakdown by Age
<5 Yrs
5-17 Yrs
Adult
12.2%
35.6%
52.2%
Breakdown by Gender
Female
Male
52.07%
47.93%
Breakdown by Ethnicity
Karen
Burman
Other
95%
1.92%
3.08%

History
Ban Don Yang camp was formed in May 1997 from two former sites, Thu Ka and Hti Ta Baw. These former sites straddled the border and were relocated after the offensives in Tenasserim Division and Dooplaya District in February 1997. Initially, living conditions were very rudimentary, with plastic sheeting for roofing and lack of adequate space between dwellings. Nowadays, houses have more suitable grass thatch roofs.

093.JPG

With the closed nature of Tham Hin camp, most new arrivals in the southern border area that are permitted to enter a camp have been sent to Ban Don Yang (350 in March 1998, 1,500 in February 2000, 270 in September 2001,). In 2001, Chumphon camp was closed down and its population was transferred to Section F in Ban Don Yang, hence the camp now having sections F1 and F2.

Early in 2005, 395 of the UNHCR’s urban-based PoC (Person of Concern) caseload were transferred to this camp as part of the Royal Thai Government’s policy to have all PoCs located in camps prior to consideration for resettlement to third countries. This has caused some tensions within the community, with some PoCs voicing complaints and demonstrating against their new living conditions. Another group, of slip holders, who had applied for refugee status was transferred to the camp in October 2006, total of 153.

The camp has never been attacked although, with its proximity to the border, there have been occasions for increased security awareness.

The camp lies directly opposite the Mon resettlement site of Halockhani – a collective name for an area consisting of 5 specific resettlement sites – which lies less than a kilometre away. The main military presence on the Mon/ Burma side of the border are units of the New Mon State Party (NMSP) – a ceasefire group which protects the area although, since the 2010 elections in the country, its status is under threat. The nearest major SPDC garrison lies 12 kms away to the northeast at the 3-Pagodas Pass; however, smaller outposts do lie nearer.

Due to its isolated location, the camp is off the mains electricity grid, although the camp office, and health and education centres in the camp have access to power from electric generators. Some households also have access to these to recharge vehicle batteries to power residential lighting.

                                                                                                                Courtesy of The Border Consortium

 

Resettlement (Source: IOM)

 

In 2005, RTG gave approval for resettlement opportunities to be offered to camp residents. Statistics for resettlement by camp are available since 2006. As of December 2011, 2,118 persons had departed from the camp – the majority resettling in the USA.

camps-locations (1).jpg

  Map : Courtesy of The Border Consortium